The Auction at Graceland•January 8, 2019
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/8/2019

Elvis was a lifelong car enthusiast and owned a wide variety of vehicles, from motorcycles to Messerschmitts to Mercedes and everything in between, and with a stable full of automobiles, it’s only fitting that Elvis would have a plethora of documentation to accompany each vehicle in his collection. In December of 1970, Elvis purchased a 1969 Mercedes 600 short wheel base Mercedes, a marque synonymous with luxury. Elvis purchased this used vehicle in California and then titled it in his home state of Tennessee.

This stately car featured a 6.3 liter V8 engine with 4 doors. Mercedes introduced the 600 in 1963 and production of this model continued through 1980 with only about 2,600 manufactured. This model was so luxurious and expensive at that time that it was often owned mainly by celebrities, royalty, the wealthy and heads of state such as John Lennon, Hugh Hefner, Elizabeth Taylor, Aristotle Onassis, Chairman Mao, Kim Jong-il and others. Perhaps because of the cost, Elvis made a down payment and continued with monthly installment payments. It is believed that after years of use, problems with the car ensued, resulting in Elvis signing the title to his friend Jimmy Velvet in the mid-1970s.

Offered is the original title with Elvis’ signature signing it to Jimmy Velvet to whom he gave it in 1974. The car was in need of repair when he gifted it to Jimmy and Jimmy did not have it fixed until after Elvis’ death. It was after repairs were made that Jimmy took the title to the Beverly Hills dealer to have the lien released. While there was no actual lien on the car at that time, it was commonplace for the ladies at the dealership to get so overcome with excitement when Elvis came in, they would often neglect to properly process the paperwork and the release of this lien was one of those times. Therefore, it was not until 1981 when Jimmy went back to have the original Bank of America lien, which should have been removed much earlier, released on the title. The offered collection includes:

  • Elvis Presley Signed State of Tennessee Title for His 1969 Mercedes Limousine, two-sided with Elvis Presley signature on reverse, purchased Dec. 15, 1970, listing partial manufacturers number “600 001 321” on front with Bank of America as Lienholder, title document measuring 5 1/4 by 7 3/16 (13.33 x 18.25 cm);
  • Original service manual with chassis (10001212001321) and engine (10098012001357) numbers handwritten on first page- likely a European hand possibly accounting for the number error, containing service dates beginning in 1969 through December 1970 in Hollywood, California indicating the last check up at 24,001 miles, measuring 4 5/8 by 6 1/2 inches (11.74 x 16.51 cm); 
  • Mercedes-Benz Owner’s Service and Warranty Policy manual with punched VIN number along the top that pierces all the pages, manual retains the carbon copy warranty coupon pages, measuring 4 9/16 by 6 1/4 inches (11.58 x 15.87 cm); 
  • German VIN data punch card containing various identification numbers associated with the vehicle including chassis (10001212001321), motor (100980-12-001354), and more, measuring 3 1/4 by 7 3/8 inches (8.25 x 18.73 cm);
  • Red plastic folder containing documents for the Becker radio system including wiring diagram, manual, two warranty postcards and original tag, measuring 6 by 4 3/8 inches (15.24 x 11.11 cm);
  • Two (2) additional Service booklets with services from Memphis at Robertson Motors in one and no notations in the other (these are likely unrelated to this exact vehicle); each measuring 4 5/8 by 6 1/2 inches (11.74 x 16.51 cm); and
  • Certificate from Jimmy Velvet that states, “Original title to Elvis Presley’s 1969 Mercedes Limousine, signed by Elvis when he personally gave the car to me.” 

This collection of ephemera well documents Elvis’ ownership of this luxurious limousine that transported the King in high style. The grouping is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

The title is in good condition with a split to the lower third quadrant that has been taped back together and a heavy crease perpendicular down the center hat has also been secured with tape, the edges exhibit wear including a small nick of paper loss, overall worn condition. The original service manual has no cover and the binding is holding only a portion of the booklet together, the other manuals are in very good condition with some peeling to the original cover laminate and loose bindings. The ones service and warranty policy booklet is missing the first page which has been torn along the designated tear line (likely a warranty postcard). All documents exhibit signs of wear from age and use, overall very good condition.
Elvis Presley Signed State of Tennessee Title for His 1969 Mercedes Limousine Plus Three Owner Manuals, Warranty Booklet, Radio Booklet and Other Documents
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $1,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $2,125.00
Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000
Number Bids: 7
Auction closed on Tuesday, January 8, 2019.
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